Woke up with a few hours to spare before I met some people in Antwerp, so I watched like 3 episodes of "Game of Thrones" while I got ready. Got to Antwerp around 230, met up with some people from the drumline, and a few of their friends. We basically went around shopping until 6. I actually bought some things, which thankfully were cheap. It was really pretty – there were lights in the streets and a bunch of street musicians, so it was a lot of fun.
Took the train to Kontich, where the MIA's were. We all changed into our gala clothes on the bus, did our hair and stuff quick, and then went inside. Of course, there was a lot of waiting. First we had to wait in the entry way to get in (the bus driver was coming with us, and it took him a while to park the bus elsewhere). We first had to go into this big garage (the garage for the TV studio we were at, I assume). You could buy drinks there, but most of us just stood around. No chairs, which sucked because I was wearing Marcela's shoes (I didn't have good gala shoes), and they were like at least a size or two too small.
Then, they called people without tickets into another room. We all had tickets. Bummer. After like an hour total we finally got to go in. It was... small. Like, it really was just a TV studio. Tons of lights and a stage and such, but still small. We went to sit down (there was a row of audience seats open), but no, they said we had to be part of the group standing in the middle. They wanted a bunch of people packed in there so it looked like there were toooons of people there. Luckily the bus driver snagged a seat, so we all put our bags with him. Of course, that meant I left my camera with him, so I didn't take any pictures. :P
This one guy, I have no idea who he was, starting tell us when to cheer, and what his hand signs meant (this meant cheer more, this meant stop cheering, etc). We had to practice cheering and such a few times. Pretty silly. Finally, after what seemed like forever, the artists started coming in (they were sitting fairly close – not like, we can touch them close, but we could see them really well.
Basically, the show was a lot of talking, singing, and turning around. On one stage they did the announcing the awards, and the artists giving speeches if they got the award, and the other stage was where the performances were and where they played video clips of the nominees (or just some other random video clips). The performances were a lot of fun, even though I didn't know like any of them. One of the drumline guys explained/translated most everything, and kept adding his own commentary, which was pretty fun.
Anyway, the coolest part was when the band "School is Cool" performed. They had probably like 15-20 guys from DrumSpirit playing this simple drum beat on stage with them. It was so cool seeing that many people I know playing on that big of a stage! I wish I had gotten a video of it.
Afterwards, we all got shuffled out of the room to that first waiting room/garage. It was still like 1030, so I knew I could get a train, but I just didn't know what time (the internet was COMPLETELY out at the house – even the wired didn't work). People were nice enough to pull up the website on their phones and tell me when I had a train. Of course, then I had to call Truut and say what time she needed to come pick me up in Antwerp (no trains anywhere closer). But, funny story, I had no credit on my phone, so I couldn't call or text. I was in the middle of texting Marcela when we were in the garage, and poof! ran out of money. Oops. So, I had to use someone else's phone to say that I would be in Antwerp in like a little over an hour, and then just hope we would find each other.
Went back to the bus, got my bag, and rushed to the train station (right across the street) because I knew I NEEDED to make the train since it was the last one. Made it just fine, ended up in Antwerp. I got a text from Marcela (I can recieve texts, just not send them), and she said they were in the big tent in the station, by the exit. Okay. I went in there, didn't see them. Huh. Maybe they were outside. Nope. Went back in the station, tried the call Marcela and I do when we're lost, checked the tent again – still nothing. Found a little thing where I can buy phone credit – you needed to pay in cash, and I had no cash with me, only my card. So, I went outside to the ATM – broken. Back inside to try to find an ATM, and then Marcela found me. Apparently they were in the tent thing, but they were so short I didn't see them over the table. :P
Drove back towards home, stopped at Patrick's work. There was a big festival thing there, with lights and fire and everything – Marcela and them were there when I was at the MIA's. When I got there, of course, it was over, but we went inside and said hello to everyone quick. Finally went home, probably around 2am, and just crashed.
tl;dr: Antwerp, MIA's (Music Industry Awards), home